July 21, Colombo: Sri Lanka has initiated measures to bring back a huge stock of Sri Lankan coins that are in the Buddhist pilgrim sites of India, the Governor of Central Bank of Sri Lanka Ajith Nivard Cabraal said.
Sri Lankan pilgrims over the years have offered tons of coins to the Buddhist temples and churches in India and Sri Lanka is taking measure to retrieve those coins to cut down the cost of minting new coins Cabraal told local TV Swarnavahini.
The Central Bank has learnt that there were coins to the value of about Rs. 80 million in Bodhgaya alone.
The Governor of Central Bank said that the value of the coins is being estimated. He said that there could be between 10 to 20 tons of coins that have been accumulated for decades.
He said discussions and processes are underway with Indian authorities to acquire the coins back as Sri Lanka faces a severe shortage of coins of smaller denominations.
Sri Lankan Buddhists make offerings to temples in India where Buddha attained enlightenment while the Sri Lankan Tamils and Christians make offerings to Hindu kovils and churches.